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Is companion character potential simply wasted in SW:ToR?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > General Discussion
Is companion character potential simply wasted in SW:ToR?

Alssaran's Avatar


Alssaran
04.20.2014 , 07:57 PM | #1
Hello!
This thread is a continuation of one of my posts in the discussion "PETITION - Save our class stories!". In this thread I posted this same opinion in a very short manner since it wasn't really part of the overall topic, but I guess getting some opinions on it in this thread can't hurt.

Now, the thought process behind my post in the other thread was: "Now, looking at SW:ToR at the moment, is Bioware holding down incredibly awesome ideas for companion characters?".

This ties in with the term: "Progressive storytelling." and the term: "Charakter story.". Both are also essential for every good Bioware game.

Now, as part of our Class story we all got Companions. Earlier or later, it matters not, we got them. With some we agree, with some we disagree, some we'd even throw out of the airlock if possible. As an example I'll take the Sith Inquisitor. This guy seems to be the archetype of "Bad companions", at least I get the feeling...

As an Inquisitor, we receive Khem first. Khem is a fit in my opinion. He ties in with the story, he's reasonable for a sith aligned character. Of course, there are gray Sith and there might even be a Light sided Sith, but we might need to agree that a Sith is intended to be Dark sided. Not ruthless, not bloodthirsty, not stupidly agressive. But Cunning, deceptive and has a tendency to aquire power. Andronikus Revel also fits quite well, he's a criminal. He can be part of anyones story, really. Then comes the weak link:
Ashara Zhavros.
I can't stretch how much I think she is a bad choice for the Sith Inquisitor. She is a light sided Jedi... Alright, she enjoys taking combat head on and stuff, but that does not necessarily completely disqualify someone as a Jedi. She basicly sees herself as a Jedi even when she travels with a Sith and sees how he enslaves, tortures and dominates the weak. Alright, she looses affection. But that's not what a Jedi would do... "I don't like you anymore, but I'll stay here!".

Now, with that in mind, let's jump to this recent patch. When I started Forged Alliances, I was hesitant. I remember seeing a first teaser Concept Art of Lana on Dulfy. I didn't like her hair, I really didn't. I thought she was a barbie Sith to some extend. I really didn't like her. Then, I started the quest. I finished it. And I must say: She and my Sorcerer would get along so nicely, it's not a good fit, it's a perfect fit. She cares about the Empire, she has a restrained and not vengeful/agressive attitude and carries herself with that silent mannerism I'd expect of someone serving a Sith Lord like Darth Nox/Imperius. She appears somewhat noble, which'd also tie in with my Sorcerer nicely.

That'd be a very prominent and recent example of a possible companion character. Of course, that complicates the Rep side since Theron Shan as a Companion would be rather strange.

Now, what Bioware has delivered us as a companion until now is one that I actually think can fit (HK), and one that is completely useless (Treek). I still cannot, and will never, understand the reasoning of bringing in an Ewok into this game as a companion. It's not inovative, it's not really something people wanted so badly and her voice is grinding some peoples nerfes thin.

So, it's a rather long explanation for a simple questions:
Why is so much good companion potential like in Lana Benikos case simply wasted for something like Forged Alliances, where she'll propably die during the last mission, sacrifice herself, or you'll flirt with her once and never hear from her again? Why do we need to endure companions like Treek, Ashara and Risha when we have potential like Lana? Tying her in like this would actually feel like this overall and epic story had more of an impact on my character rather than it just beeing another boring event in the galactic timeline I participate in somewhat after 55 with other guys. (That's where Character story comes into play again, it feels as a part of what my character has achieved rather than something I did during a free hour in my overall conquer plan.)

Why can't they simply add a possibility to add Lana to your crew during the end of the Forged Alliances story arc? She doesn't need more than the 10.000 Companion Affection.Maybe the possibility for people to Romance her. Who already romanced an old companion and wants to switch, make Flirt options which result in a dialog that displays a choice for your current LI or her, and make your choice.

Of course, we'd need to introduce a companion on Republic side which isn't Shan. But, I guess writing such a character is less than a godly task.

Is anyone else bothered by this? Does anybody else thinks that letting a character like her go to waste in this story arc is a shame? Is putting a mercenary Ewok really a better choice than giving Empire players this Sith? People already start speculating about Lana, I also read chatpieces on the Fleet why she'd sense the approaching danger but others wouldn't. People are clearly intrigued by her. Why not use characters like this as a companion? Even if she's hard to get, I'd completely go to the effort of farming and Flashpoint running to get her.

Am I the only one who has this point of view, or do some people out there share it with me?

DomiSotto's Avatar


DomiSotto
04.20.2014 , 08:06 PM | #2
It is natural to come across story NPCs that you wish you could have had as a companion. It is natural to want things changed about the companions you already have adding or cutting out things. In single-player games that could be modded that usually spurs on gazillion of mods (just look at Bio's own Baldur's Gate, lol) , However, in a MMO, the content cannot be changed and will not be changed by the company. Hence, you can't do much.

I am sure every player can enumerate multiple scenery NPCs they would have wanted to come along. Here, for example:

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=136710

It is not a waste of potential, it is a well written scenery NPC (or, sometimes, and NPC that was supposed to be joinable but was cut out in development). Heck, I am still sore that Attros Finn was not picked over Qyzen, but whatever. Every class needs its monster comp to cut down on voicing. (Or Tharan. That I have harder time explaining)

horrorfaneightys's Avatar


horrorfaneightys
04.21.2014 , 02:40 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by DomiSotto View Post
It is natural to come across story NPCs that you wish you could have had as a companion. It is natural to want things changed about the companions you already have adding or cutting out things. In single-player games that could be modded that usually spurs on gazillion of mods (just look at Bio's own Baldur's Gate, lol) , However, in a MMO, the content cannot be changed and will not be changed by the company. Hence, you can't do much.

I am sure every player can enumerate multiple scenery NPCs they would have wanted to come along. Here, for example:

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=136710

It is not a waste of potential, it is a well written scenery NPC (or, sometimes, and NPC that was supposed to be joinable but was cut out in development). Heck, I am still sore that Attros Finn was not picked over Qyzen, but whatever. Every class needs its monster comp to cut down on voicing. (Or Tharan. That I have harder time explaining)
^This^ There are lots of brilliant NPCs in this game.
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HeatRacer's Avatar


HeatRacer
04.21.2014 , 04:17 AM | #4
Lot of Sgt Jaxo fans (from the Trooper story) out there, myself included. It would've been great to have her as a companion, but certain...story choices you make would not have been possible (and thereby have meaning and enrich the story) if she were part of my crew.

arunav's Avatar


arunav
04.21.2014 , 04:23 AM | #5
The likely reason we got Treek was she was left over from initial development, and, like much of what was released in the past two years, it was there to charge for.

I still recall getting a survey of some kind from EA in summer 2012 asking what we as players would be willing to spend for an expansion with various things included, like Makeb and Treek. Almost everything on that list has made it into the game by now.

Going forward, I'm sure new companions will be more thought-out.

arunav's Avatar


arunav
04.21.2014 , 04:32 AM | #6
I'd be more interested in having the companion-role kits from Beta come back in some format than getting new companions.

I'm not sure if it's technically possible, but since they were once in the game, maybe it is. After playing all 8 stories now, I typically don't get to use the companions that are most likeable, because of their role.

If kits were made available to change the default tank/dps/healer settings, a lot of folks might prefer it over new companions, because they'd essentially get to actually use the ones they like, or switch between them whenever preferred.

It would also make use of Cunning blaster pistols with shield stats on them. Those are a tough sell on the GTN.

Drudenfusz's Avatar


Drudenfusz
04.21.2014 , 04:56 AM | #7
I think it is okay that not every NPC in game can become a companion. I also think it is okay to have companions who are quirky and do not agree on everything you do. Still, I would like to have more companions, or at least more story with those I already have. Imagine having an option to talk with a spouse when you get your stronghold or getting the GSF crew aslo as full companions.
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Reno_Tarshil's Avatar


Reno_Tarshil
04.21.2014 , 05:11 AM | #8
Quote: Originally Posted by arunav View Post
I'd be more interested in having the companion-role kits from Beta come back in some format than getting new companions.

I'm not sure if it's technically possible, but since they were once in the game, maybe it is. After playing all 8 stories now, I typically don't get to use the companions that are most likeable, because of their role.

If kits were made available to change the default tank/dps/healer settings, a lot of folks might prefer it over new companions, because they'd essentially get to actually use the ones they like, or switch between them whenever preferred.

It would also make use of Cunning blaster pistols with shield stats on them. Those are a tough sell on the GTN.
I call shenanigans.

You don't always have to use the Healer companion or what have you. If you gear your favorite companion and know your class, then you'll still be fine in any fight.
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DomiSotto's Avatar


DomiSotto
04.21.2014 , 06:23 AM | #9
I am with Reno here, though I also try to divide and conquer. But silly enough it creates hilarious problems. Like my She Smuggler is obviously tasked with being a Light-sided Riggs' girl, and max out the 4 achievements on the three boys. Now, the He-Smuggler, I would if I could just romanced Akaavi and turned him DS and all that. But that means Risha will never have a favored gift, so he has to love Risha. No offense to all Risha's fans out there... So, my poor kid will have to chose between love and money, lol!

Honestly, I am glad there are only 5 companions!And I sure am not going to bother with HK or Treek. I have enough of a balancing act to do to add 2 more to the mix. I mean, my poor characters that do not have male alts.... yakes, have to deal with all those chirpy and unbelievably super-special over-gifted Male PC RI comps.

EDIT: and there are much, much simpler things that would make me dance with joy in companion's department. Right now, a Mirialian or (dare I say it?!) Torguta overlay for Iresso, and a couple of handsome overlays for Aric and a Twilek for Riggs would have made me very, very happy. Hey, if a girl can't make out with Zenith... there gonna be some compensation!

freeoftime's Avatar


freeoftime
04.21.2014 , 07:06 AM | #10
lmao

Seriously? Just because a companion might not fit your character doesn't mean they won't fit anyone else's, you know -- and the same is true in reverse.

I haven't gotten around to Forged Alliances yet, but just from your description -- "she cares about the empire"? My SI tolerates that in Talos, because Talos is sweet and practically the nice uncle he never had that he regularly fanboys over Archaeology with, but I could easily see him go lolnope at Lana.

Meanwhile Ashara? Heads over heels in love, would do anything for her and at least half his conviction to change the Empire comes from her. Honestly couldn't think of a better fit for him at all.

Also lol, there "might" even be light sided Sith -- my SI is light 3, holds peace speeches and by Chapter 3 snarls at other Sith Lords how "violence is not the only solution" because he's so done with everything he can't even be bothered pretending any more. Meanwhile my SW is... an only occasionally murderous teddy bear who is probably gonna leave you be or just talk things out if you don't threaten/harm his friends. And tbh both stories so far have seemed more intriguing by being LS than DS.

I wouldn't be against adding more companions if they decide to do that, but just because the existing ones might not fit your character doesn't mean they're bad or a weak link and won't fit other people's characters. My friend's agent ended up being Light 5 for example and only got along with Kaliyo through the liberal use of gifts so she could see Kaliyo's arc and get the bonus for maxed affection, while mine gets along with her quite a bit better despite them not being an obvious fit personality wise at all. (And Khem and my SI didn't fit *at all* at first and it took until towards the end of Chapter 1 for my SI to start warming up to Khem until he made a complete 180 at the end of it and now considers Khem a good friend.) There's always going to be a companion that doesn't fit you, because there are so many different ways to play your character in a game like this and they try to have someone for everyone. I have that problem every time I play through DA:O because I don't have a single character who actually likes Alistair and gets along with him, but I just deal with it. *shrugs*